Sunday, 28 October 2012

A useful mistake

A while ago I made a pen, not that unusual I guess.  I had bought a black acrylic with gold glitter in it from Gary Pye Woodturning Supplies and thought it would look great as a Cigar style pen with gold fittings.

All had gone well with the drilling and gluing of the blank.  I was ready to turn what I thought would be a great pen.  Unfortunately the fickled finger of fate hang in the shed that day and disaster struck.  A moments lapse in concentration?  A tool not sharp enough? A weak part in the blank? I don't know what it was, but I put a deep chip in one end.  It was not the life ending drama I had thought but enough to produce a few curse words and to kick the waste bin across the shed.  However I decided not to give in.  I took the blank of and re-squared the end with a pen mill and returned.

I knew that the pen would be too short for the cartridge, but had my fingers crossed I could modify it, or that by some miracle the pen nib would still retract enough.  I was wrong.

pen retracted

When the pen was fully assembled it did not retract all the way, not by a long shot, not even if I modified the transmission (something I have done before).  However I loved this pen.  It looked smart, had great balance of colour (something I haven't captured in the photo) and is extremely comfy to hold.

It may not have turned in to a sell able pen, or a display pen but it is my favourite everyday pen.  I use it when studying, writing lists and just leaving it lying around on the bench.  It may have been a mistake, but it has certainly been a useful one.  It also meant the pen got the use it deserved, not just sitting in the box with the rest of the pens.

Have you every made a mistake that worked out well?

No comments:

Post a Comment